So the time has come to ditch the good old breast pump, huh? Maybe your nursing days are over or maybe you are just breaking up with a disappointing pump. Either way, you need a plan. How do you get rid of this thing?
In my time nursing, I have sent several pumps to pasture. All for different reasons but I’ve been there. Google and I got through it together so let me return the favor and walk you through this process.
You have options, thank goodness. You don’t have to store that thing until it becomes an antique.
So, here are three ideas for what to do with an old breast pump to get it out of your hair.
This might seem like an obvious option but I have a disclaimer here. You can only resell closed system pumps and without the attachments. A closed system pump is designed with a barrier to keep milk from entering the pump motor.
An open system pump is not sanitary for multiple users. They are designed to be used by only one user for the lifetime of the pump. Have a Medela pump? Reselling is a no, no. They are all open system (besides the hospital grade pumps).
So if you have a closed system pump, then you are good to resell! Go on sites like Ebay or Craigs List. Search for pumps and see what others are selling the same pump for. Create an ad and get to it! Easy peasy!
There are a lot of closed system pumps on the market today, so yours just might be one. Here is a quick list (no, this is not all of them):
- Avent ISIS iQ Duo
- Ameda Elite
- Ameda Purely Yours
- Playtex Embrace
- Bailey Medical Nurture III
- Evenflo Comfort Select Dual
- First Years Natural Comfort Double
- Lansinoh Double Electric
- Avent ISIS iQ Uno
- Avent ISIS iQ Uno Complete
- First Years Natural Comfort Single
- Medela Swing
- Hygeia EnDeare
- Hygeia EnJoye-LBI
- Hygeia EnJoye-EXT
- Hygeia EnJoye-EPS
- All Spectra Pumps
I highly recommend reselling your pump if you can. They cost a lot of money and while you won’t recoup the full amount, you will get something!
Another great option is to donate your breast pump. Again, this would need to be a closed system or hospital grade pump. Shelters or support groups might be a good place to start.
Don’t be surprised if you have a hard time finding someone to take it, though. Not many people are educated on a closed system vs open system pump and may have a blanket policy not to accept breast pumps period due to the potential health risks.
The red tape in trying to find a place to donate may be why fewer moms do it. I love the idea of donating and think it is a great option. With so many moms in need, what an amazing gift!
I hope more organizations update their policies on breast pumps and we see more moms donating.
If all else fails, you can recycle your pump.
I would start by contacting the pump company. Hygeia, Medela, Avent, etc all have recycling options. You can send them your pump (has to be their brand pump) and they will recycle it for you.
If you can’t go through the pump company, then call your city recycling center and see if they will take it. Some might.
You can also contact a local electronic recycling site. You shouldn’t have a problem with them taking it. There are times when I see advertisements for electronics recycling at various locations where I live. So check the web to see when your city might have an event as you may be able to take advantage.
All the plastic parts like the flanges, bottles, valves, etc can be recycled in your home recycling bin.
I think we would all agree that holding onto your breast pump is useless. Once you have moved past the days of pumping, there is no need for it to collect dust in a closet somewhere.
The main goal is to keep these things out of landfills. A breast pump should never need to be thrown in the trash. Yes, it takes some extra effort to hand it off but in the long run, you can feel better about the fact you took the time to care for the environment.
If your pumping days are over, let me congratulate you on finishing your journey and join you in celebrating the boobie-freedom you are now experiencing!
If you are just breaking up with a lousy pump, click here to read about my favorite pump and let me save you from future mistakes! Keep fighting the good fight! Your boobs will be your again one day… They may look different but they will be yours. I promise.